Recommend Custom Strings for...

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
RobMacKillop
Posts: 3188
Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2015 5:24 pm
Location: Edinburgh

Recommend Custom Strings for...

Post by RobMacKillop » Sun Jan 06, 2019 2:33 pm

I'm experimenting with stringing a 10-string guitar in theorbo tuning, at least the first ten strings of a theorbo.

The bass to treble tuning should be:

D E F G A d g b e a

Note that the third string is the highest pitch, and the first two strings are down an octave from where you might expect them - it's a re-entrant instrument.

I made a video with this tuning but DOWN a minor 3rd, and the sound is good, but too muddy. So, I cobbled together a set for the correct pitch (setting aside arguments over what actual pitch was in the early 17th century - some say it was higher, some lower).

Note that strings 3 to 6 - A d g b - can be taken from a regular 6-string set.

The problem pitches are the low G, F#, D, and the first two strings. The first string is an a, the same pitch as the note a at the second fret of a regular g string. The second string is an e, the same pitch as the second fret of a regular d string.

My cobbled-together set has given me the notion that this tuning really works well on the 10-string, and the repertoire sounds great on it. But I'm not satisfied with having the wrong tension of strings here and there. Any suggestions?

The following is a video from BEFORE I worked out the set at the correct pitch. Here it is a minor 3rd too low, but it will give you an idea of what I'm getting at.


Kjetil Heggelund
Posts: 921
Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2011 8:51 am
Location: Hønefoss, NORWAY

Re: Recommend Custom Strings for...

Post by Kjetil Heggelund » Sun Jan 06, 2019 3:52 pm

Pretty hard to suggest anything to a true guitar hero...Did you consider Aquila strings? They have special strings for different tunings of 650mm, down an octave & fifth and up a minor third & fourth.
Kevin Aram "Torres", 2009
Stephan Schlemper "Transparence", 2015
Whatever you can do to have a good time, let's get on with it so long as it doesn't cause a murder...FZ

RobMacKillop
Posts: 3188
Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2015 5:24 pm
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Recommend Custom Strings for...

Post by RobMacKillop » Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:44 pm

Hi Kjetil. I've been looking at their website, but would have to buy two or three different sets, which makes it expensive.

Return to “Luthiers”